Throughout the super bowl media coverage, we were inundated with stories ranging from favorite party recipes, to what Tom Brady was wearing as he walked into the media day interview. But the most important story was the one that appeared on Sundays’ Review of the New York Times “Football Destroyed My Husband’s Mind” by Emily Kelley.

The article discusses Rob Kelley, a former retired NFL football Safety for the New Orleans Saints, and a previous player for the New England Patriots. The resounding story details how badly football damaged his brain.

CTE and the Impact of Traumatic Brain Injury

With over two decades of playing football, Robert’s wife noticed the effects football had on him, even while he was unable to recognize it himself. She states in the book, “When you live with someone with brain damage, you become highly attuned to your environment, and develop an intimate relationship with your senses and intuition.” She then goes on to detail how Rob went through mood swings, depression, and sudden weight loss after retirement.  “He lost weight. It seemed like one day, out of the blue, he stopped being hungry. And often he would forget to eat. I’d find full bowls of cereal left around the house, on bookshelves or the fireplace mantel” she said.

Besides the damage resulting from football, Rob Kelley had never been diagnosed with a brain injury. In 2016, the NFL did release a statement recognizing  that concussions did have long term effects and there was a connection between football and chronic traumatic encephalopathy or (C.T.E). CTE is degenerative disease in the brain. It can cause serious symptoms like memory loss, confusion, impaired judgment, aggression, depression and anxiety.

In January 2013,  The Bert Bell/Pete Rozelle N.F.L. player retirement plan and supplemental disability plan had awarded Rob Kelley total and permanent disability benefits, which he is entitled to these monthly benefits for the rest of his life. These payments are separate from the estimated $1 billion settlement of concussion-related lawsuits for thousands of retired players that have registered.

I, Tim Misny, have represented victims of closed head injuries for over 37 years across the United States, and I know that the consequences of a SINGLE blow to the head can be utterly devastating. The outcome is worsened by the repeated physical damage that football players experience.

I have a prediction, and that is some day 15-20 years from now when all of the medical studies conclusively show that head how severe head trauma sustained in football is, it will be considered child endangerment if a parent allows their child to play football.

Lets hope it doesn’t take that long.

If you or someone you love has suffered severe head injury, you must contact my offices immediately. As your Ohio brain injury attorney, I’ll be there for you, and I’ll Make Them Pay!®

Author: Tim Misny | For over four decades, personal injury lawyer Tim Misny has represented the injured victim in in birth injurymedical malpractice, and catastrophic injury/wrongful death cases, serving ClevelandAkron/CantonColumbusDayton and neighboring communities. You can reach Tim by email at or call at 855.800.0384.



Catastrophic Injuries